TED LEO and the PHARMACISTS premiered the video for "Colleen" over at the 'Gum. It's catchy, with exciting arm wrestling footage as a bonus.
OKKERVIL RIVER does the interview and free songs thing for Daytrotter, including covers of "April Anne" by Papa John Phillips, "Do What You Gotta Do," by Jimmy Webb, and "No Easy Way Down," by Carole King via Dusty Springfield (one or two of you already know the Dusty track is a fave of mine).
ART BRUT frontman Eddie Argos is joining with Black Box Recorder under the name Black Arts for the UK's the Christmas number one spot. The name of their song? "Christmas Number One," natch. But can it topple Billy Mack?
GEORGIE JAMES stopped by The Current for a chat and mini-set you can stream via MPR.
PRINCE is streaming a new song about his dispute with fansites on a new site of his own.
FIERY FURNACES: Matthew Friedberger provided a playlist of American accents in music, along with an introduction on indie rock, to London's Guardian.
JOSH RITTER picked up tips from a Josh Ritter tribute band.
STARS stopped by The Current for a chat and mini-set you can stream via MPR. Singer Amy Milan talked with InsideBayArea about the Montreal scene, the birth of the band and the new album. Speaking of which, the band has a new video for "The Night Starts Here."
SOPHISTIPOP: The O.C. Register's Ben Wener pays tribute to various forms of sophisticated contemporary pop, from Prefab Sprout and The Smiths in the 80s to Stars, Beirut and Nellie McKay today.
RADIOHEAD is having a behind-the-scenes feud with former label EMI over a Google ad and other issues. Breaking up is hard to do.
YOKO ONO sold John Lennon's rare home recording of "Real Love" to JCPenney for a commercial. The Beatles have had their songs licensed for commercials in the past, but with the rare exception of perhaps "Revolution" years ago, they never have allowed master recordings out. The songs are always re-recorded.
BOB DYLAN: London's Guardian interviews quasi-biopic director Todd Haynes about I'm Not There: "I wasn't that interested in, you know, the truth.."
AMY WINEHOUSE was visibly distraught after visiting her husband Blake Fielder-Civil at HM Pentonville Prison for the first time.
BRITNEY SPEARS: A "spotter" for the paparazzi was reportedly run over by a paparazzo for X17 while chasing Britney Spears who had just come out of The Four Seasons Hotel. That Other Blog claims the man is in critical condition, with broken legs, arms and back. Coincidentally, the pop tart has partnered with X17 to raise money for UNICEF by auctioning an autographed CD on eBay. Spears reportedly had liposuction on her bottom and hips last weekend in Vegas. TMZ claims that she will now say her false positive drug test may have been caused by her athsma inhaler, though Albuterol is not an amphetamine, and the class of drug that showed up on the test was an amphetamine. Allegedly.
KANYE WEST: The investigation into his mother's death seems to be focusing on her doctor. Plastic surgeon Dr. Jan Adams told TMZ that he was the doctor who performed cosmetic surgery on Donda West before she died, and that he did nothing wrong. Sources told TMZ the operation lasted twice as long as it should have, and that Dr. Adams then sent Ms. West home, rather than to a recovery center. CelebTV.com obtained a document from the Executive Director of the California Medical Board asking the state to consider revoking or suspending Adams' physician and surgeon's certificate in April of this year. CelebTV.com also obtained court documents in which a former patient accused the doctor of sexual assault, civil battery and intentional infliction of emotional distress. This has brought out past and current medical malpractice suits brought against Adams, not to mention his ex-girlfriend, who got a restraining order against him.
LINDSAY LOHAN back with Samantha Ronson? Guess she's off the "bad influence" list. The actress also started community service with the American Red Cross, which was part of the plea deal for her two DUI convictions last August.
BOY GEORGE has been charged with false imprisonment after allegedly chaining a male escort to a wall in his home. You don't have to be Sherlock Holmes to figure out where this story is going.
THE McCARTNEYS: After a series of outspoken interviews which seemed to do her cause no good, Heather Mills has apparently persuaded producers to let her compete in the BBC's Strictly Come Dancing Christmas special. She hopes her appearance on the "USA versus Great Britain special", in which celebrities from previous series of the two programs go head-to-head, will ensure "damage limitation" after her recent onslaught on Sir Paul. Mills is reportedly also the target of an upcoming biography which may be less than flattering.
TOM-KAT UPDATE: Author Chris Morton has reportedly been forced into hiding because of aggressive threats made to him by Cruise's associates in the Church of Scientology over Morton's upcoming scathing biography of Cruise.
OJ SIMPSON co-defendant Walter Alexander testified against The Juice, telling the court that O.J. wanted him to "pack heat" for the memorabilia confrontation that would later land them both in hot water. And if you read the whole story, give TMZ bonus points for the NWA reference that's nsfw.
HUGH GRANT & LIZ HURLEY: Together again? At least her new husband was around last time.
SIENNA MILLER is said to be considering marrying Rhys Ifans after his tenth proposal. Sources tell the Daily Mail she promised to give him an answer by Christmas.
STAR TREK REBOOT: Pics of Zachary Quinto as young Spock have found their way online.
OWEN WILSON is reportedly dating leggy model Le Call. His dalliance with Jessica Simpson may have been an effort by Simpson to drum up good favor in the court of public opinion in advance of her first country album.
JASON SCHWARTZMAN was supposed to be promoting The Darjeeling Limited at Aint-It-Cool-News, but he and Wes Anderson already sorta did that, so he ended up geeking out over other movies with interviewer "Quint" instead, complete with embedded audio. I enjoyed it, but I am not right in the head.
PAKISTAN: Benazir Bhutto ruled out discussions with Pres. Musharraf as she was placed under a seven day house arrest. North-West Frontier Province Gov. Orakzai said the military did not exchange Taliban leaders for captured soldiers. He also said the situation in the tribal areas was conducive for holding elections. A military corps commander said that upwards of 800 Taliban are active in Swat in the NWFP. The Pakistani Army took over command in Swat on Monday. The current political and military turmoil may be straining the military there.
IRAN has met a key demand of the UN nuclear agency by delivering blueprints that show how to mold uranium metal into the shape of warheads, in an apparent concession meant to stave off the threat of new sanctions. Iran maintains it was given the papers without asking for them during its black market purchases of the nuclear equipment that now serve as the backbone of its program to enrich uranium... which explains why Iran refused to turn them over since 2005? Diplomats said Tehran has failed to meet other requests made by the IAEA in its attempts to end nearly two decades of nuclear secrecy on the part of the Islamic Republic. Meanwhile, an Iranian leader told British MPs during a private meeting at a peace conference that homosexuals deserve to be executed or tortured and possibly both. BTW, the Pet Shop Boys have a cameo in that story.
IRAQ: Bill Roggio rounds up news on Operation Iron Hammer, which is meant counter AQI's repositioning in the northern provinces of Ninewa, Tamin, Salahadin, and Diyala. In addition, US forces killed a wanted al-Qaeda terrorist network cell leader and his family in Mosul, the capital of Nineveh province, while a key al-Qaeda figure was killed in a US strike on Samarra in Salahaddin province. At least 59 terror suspects, including a key al-Qaeda operative, were arrested on Sunday in the town of Bihriz during joint US-Iraqi security offensive, as mop-up operations begin in Baquba, 60 km north-east of Baghdad. The numbers of senior AQI operatives killed or captured have steadily increased since mid-June -- 19 in July, 25 in August, and 29 in September.
IRAQ II: US and Iraqi troops killed an estimated 15 al Qaeda gunmen during a fierce battle south of Baghdad after the militants launched a major attack on recently formed neighborhood patrols. Meanwhile, the Iraqi government announced preparations for a major military operation in Baghdad, even as it hopes it will soon be able to declare an end to a US-Iraqi security operation in the capital. Ronald Kessler's new book claims that Saddam Hussein anticipated that UN sanctions would be lifted and he could resume making a nuclear weapon; he also claimed his WMD deceptions were intended as a ruse to convince Iran that he was a threat to them.
WHEN OTTERS ATTACK: At least one woman and two dogs have been attacked by seemingly rabid otters on South Merritt Island in Florida. If there is a hero in the rabid otter tale, it has to be Taz, the 10-year-old Westie who fought off one frothing otter to keep it away from the Linnett family. Video at the link.
A 9-FT ALLIGATOR hands down vigilante justice to a fleeing robbery suspect at the Miccosukee Resort and Gaming facility in Florida: "Some alligators just have a nasty disposition and he was just a nasty gator," owner of All American Gator Brian Woods said. Let's go to the video!
HUNDREDS OF CROCODILES washed away from a farm after floods in central Vietnam are being hunted by soldiers and villagers. At least seven of the animals have been shot or recaptured, media reports said, but no-one yet knows how many escaped.
THE LAST GREAT WHITE WHALE could be slaughtered as Japan's whaling fleet prepares to embark on its annual hunt in the Southern Ocean. The whale has been named Migaloo, when it could have been named Ishmael.
KNUT UPDATE: The director of the Berlin Zoo has banned zookeeper Thomas Dörflein from having contact with the celebrity polar bear -- it's just too dangerous to play with the once-cuddly Knut these days.